Den is a long running fantasy comic series by Richard Corben, that is essentially John Carter of Mars written with a 1970s sensibility.The series began with an original amateur animated short called Neverwhere where a white collar worker named Dan is whisked to a fantasy world of that name and became a naked muscleman having an adventure with a buxom naked sorceress.The series continued as a comic strip in originally in Grim Wit #2 and was expanded upon in the French comic anthology, Metal Hurlant which was eventually translated in the American version, Heavy Metal. Here, Dan's nephew, David Ellis Norman, found plans for a device that transported himself to Neverwhere and changed into a studly naked muscleman himself on his own adventures.The series has continued in various incarnations, some of which toned down the eroticism of the series only to have it flare up again until it ended with the "Denz" series in the pornographic Penthouse Comix which featured yet another relative coming to that world.Along the way, the first story arc of Den appeared in a condensed adaptation in the film Heavy Metal with John Candy as the title character.
Den has the following tropes exhibited:
- All Amazons Want Hercules: Queen Kil wants to dominate Neverwhere, but is also eager to have Den in her bed when the opportunity arises.
- Barbarian Hero
- Chick Magnet: Den finds that every human woman that came to that world throws herself at him. However, unlike other males in this trope, he is eager to indulge them when circumstances permit.
- God Save Us from the Queen!: Queen Kil, although originally a Distressed Damsel in the original film, becomes this in the early comics as a ruthless tyrant perfectly willing to engage in human sacrifice and organized mass rape to achieve her goals.
- I Choose to Stay: To quote our hero, "On Earth, I'm nobody, but here, I'm Den."
- Low Culture, High Tech: Neverwhere is a primitive Sword and Sorcery planet where Queen Kil has occasionally supplied weapons through magic, ranging from primitive knives to fully loaded automatic firearms.
- Male Frontal Nudity: Den unconsciously found that he is perfectly comfortable being buck naked in Neverwhere.
- Mr. Fanservice: Den and other male human becomes this upon arrival in Neverwhere, naked, muscled and hung, albeit bald.
- Possibly to Freud Was Right levels of symbolism; Den's huge, bulging shape, big, throbbing veins and large shiny bald head make him look phallic even when you can't see his enormous penis.
- Ms. Fanservice: Any female human becomes this upon arrival, young naked and buxom with beautiful hair.
- Naked on Arrival: That's what happens when you're taken to Neverwhere, and you often find that you like staying that way.
- National Geographic Nudity: Neverwhere has no nudity taboos. For instance in the first book, Den and Kath, who are buck naked, meet Kang, a warrior who is largely fully clothed with armor and a hooded cape and he never gives any comments about them.
- Normally, I Would Be Dead Now
- Recycled In Space: At least originally, this series is what John Carter of Mars would have been like in the 1970s, with its relaxed attitude to depicting sexuality.
- Shameless Fanservice Girl / Innocent Fanservice Girl: About half and half: any woman coming from Earth to Neverwhere typically becomes this, buck naked and buxom and perfectly content to be that. The female characters focused on this series seem to unconsciously lose their sense of body modesty: they typically don't treat their nudity as anything noteworthy in Neverwhere, but they are eager to indulge sexually when circumstances permit.
- Trapped in Another World: And he finds he likes the place.
- Villainesses Want Heroes: Queen Kil does for Den and she gets to enjoy him in bed too.
- World of Buxom: Nearly all the female characters, especially the women who were brought from Earth, make up this trope.